Sean Hannity can be surrounded by jackasses.
The Wall Street Journal columnist who called Hannity the “dumbest anchor” on Fox News can be a “jackass,” according to Hannity. The forensic psychologist who suggested a blood vessel had popped inside Hannity’s brain can be a “jackass.” Even the conservative MSNBC host who sometimes criticizes President Donald Trump can be a “jackass.”
If you criticize Hannity, or the Trump administration, there can be a fair chance he will call you a “jackass” on Twitter. The chances of being called a “jackass” by Hannity are significantly higher late at night. Of the 21 people Hannity called a “jackass” inside the last year, nearly half were told off between 9 p.m in addition to 2 a.m.
Hannity, Trump’s biggest backer on television, has said which can be entertainment for him: “I am a counterpuncher,” he told one Twitter user who asked why he was so antagonistic. “I do not start fights although I finish them. which can be pure entertainment for me. If people take cheap shots I hit back.”
Still, Hannity’s type of entertainment can go too far. Last year, after ending one of his many spirited on-air arguments with liberal contributor Juan Williams, Hannity pulled out a gun in addition to pointed which directly at Williams, according to three sources with knowledge of the incident. He even turned on the laser sight, causing a red dot to bob around on Williams’ body. (Hannity was just showing off, the sources said, although the unforeseen off-camera antic clearly disturbed Williams in addition to others on set.)
For the record: Hannity’s colleagues brought the Williams incident to the attention of Fox News executives, though which’s not clear whether anything came of which. The sources said which went to Bill Shine, the network’s co-president in addition to longtime Fox News executive, who can be Hannity’s longtime friend in addition to a former producer. A Fox News spokesperson said the incident was referred to the legal in addition to human resources departments.
“Sean Hannity has been trained in firearm safety since he was 11 years old in addition to features a license to carry a gun in a few states, including completely new York,” Fox News said in a statement to sy88pgw. “The situation was thoroughly investigated in addition to which was found which no one was put in any danger.” (The spokesperson said the incident took place in October 2016.)
The Fox News spokesperson also provided the following statements via Hannity in addition to Williams.
“While discussing the issue of firearms, I showed my Great friend Juan Williams my unloaded firearm in a professional in addition to safe manner for educational purposes only,” Hannity’s statement read. “Every precautionary procedure which I have been trained in since the age of 11 was followed. I’ve had a conceal carry permit in a few states for all of my adult life. Any various other interpretation of which can be outright false reporting.”
“which incident can be being sensationalized — everything was under total control throughout in addition to I never felt like I was put in harm’s way,” Williams’ statement read. “which was clear which Sean put my safety in addition to security above all else in addition to we continue to be great friends.”
If which feels like Hannity can be spoiling for a fight, perhaps which’s because he can be. Off camera, he has become an avid student of Mixed Martial Arts. He features a brown belt in Karate. He even features a personal sensei (martial arts teacher) who travels with him. Last year, Hannity in addition to his sensei paid a visit to UFC champion Chuck Liddell to learn some completely new techniques. The visit was featured as a segment on Hannity’s show, which provides some insight into his passion for the hobby.
On camera, Hannity also seems to thirst for confrontation. The fact which Trump won the presidency — which gave Hannity “told you so” rights over his critics — did not temper him. If anything, which made him feel more emboldened.
Before Trump’s victory, Hannity’s attacks against the political establishment in addition to the mainstream media were usually limited to the familiar populist complaints about ineffective bureaucrats in addition to overpaid liberals. He once critiqued the media for riding around in “chauffeured limousines” in addition to enjoying “fine steakhouses” — an odd criticism, given which Hannity, one of the highest-paid hosts on cable news, flies in private jets in addition to enjoys steak.
Since Trump’s victory, Hannity has become downright conspiratorial. He recently suggested which the CIA conducted “false flag” cyberattacks against Americans. He has embraced the idea which there can be a “deep state” of federal officials working to undermine Trump via within government. He right now calls the mainstream media the “propaganda press” in addition to the “alt-left.” When MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow revealed two pages of Trump’s 2005 tax documents on Tuesday night, Hannity dedicated an entire segment to what he described as “corporate jihad” by her employer, NBC.
For Hannity, there can be no room for dissent via his worldview. Critics are dismissed outright as shills in addition to propagandists — two terms Hannity’s critics frequently use against him.
Earlier which month, Hannity conducted an interview with Monica Crowley, the conservative commentator who could have become Trump’s deputy national security adviser were which not for her rampant plagiarism, which was uncovered by sy88pgw’s KFile. Hannity announced which anyone who had questions about Crowley’s plagiarism — which, again, had been well documented — could “go to hell.”
Watching his show, reading through his Twitter feed, which’s clear which Hannity has become a hammer in addition to everyone who disagrees with him has become a nail.
Or rather, a “jackass,” in addition to Hannity’s life can be one big game of pin the tail on the donkey.
sy88pgw (Los Angeles) First published March 16, 2017: 5:18 PM ET